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University of Edinburgh

The Client

The University of Edinburgh first opened its gates to students in 1583 and since then has become a world leading centre for teaching and research with global ambitions. Over 41% of the University student population comes from outside of the UK. The University operates from a number of locations in and around the city of Edinburgh, one of the most attractive places to live, work and study in the UK.

The Project

The University was operating a network of 6 legacy Sopho PBX systems supporting more than 10,000 users. Whilst the University had also introduced some VoIP technology they recognised that a more strategic approach needed to be taken to ensure the project was completed in a timely manner and delivered best value.

To address these issues and put in place a modern communication solution to support new ways of working, the University took a strategic decision to initiate a replacement project. Their first step was select a specialist consultancy to assist in the project, and following a competitive procurement 4C Strategies were appointed to advise and assist the University

How 4C Helped

Our first piece of work for the University was to undertake an options analysis to determine an appropriate way forward. This analysis needed to consider not just the technology to be deployed, but also alternative service models such as hosted or managed services.

From this options analysis a business case was developed to secure the budget for the project and we were retained to manage the procurement working closely in collaboration with the University procurement department.

A restricted OJEU procurement was undertaken and a supplier selected to deliver a resilient multi-site IP solution, with enhanced features such as contact centre.

Following award of contract to Getronics UK with an NEC server based solution 4C were retained to manage the implementation phase of the project.

Outcome / Benefits

The overall outcome of the 4C project is that the University is about to complete the implementation of a new NEC server based IP solution, supporting users across multiple sites on a single virtual system.

As a subsidiary project 4C has assisted the University to select a supplier of SIP network services and to migrate multiple inbound DDI ranges to SIP in addition to outbound service. The SIP service is delivered in highly resilient configuration with a direct primary connection to the University primary data centre with failover to a resilient JANET connection. The SIP services were successfully first used in 2016 for student clearing and admissions.

Some key highlights of the project and the associated investment are as follows:

  • Security of the telephone services as the Slegacy opho PBX systems will be decommissioned before withdrawal of support.
  • Provision of enhanced contact centre features to support the Estates and IT help desks, and to manage the clearing and student admissions process in August of each year.
  • A reduction in operating costs arising from the transition to SIP which has an included UK landline and mobile call tariff.
  • Reduced costs of moves and changes as users can reconnect their handset anywhere on the University network.
  • Improved resilience both through a multi-server on-site deployment and resilient SIP connectivity.
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University of Edinburgh

The University of Edinburgh first opened its gates to students in 1583 and since then has become a world leading centre for teaching and research with global ambitions. Over 41% of the University student population comes from outside of the UK. The University operates from a number of locations in and around the city of Edinburgh, one of the most attractive places to live, work and study in the UK.

WHAT DO OUR CLIENTS SAY?
Ulster University
Donna O'Kane

“Dave very quickly gained a solid understanding of our requirements, some of which are unique due to history and geography in Northern Ireland. He brought an unsurpassed level of market and technical knowledge relating to unified communications and demonstrated a unique ability to balance any business or technical challenges that arose as the project progressed. Dave worked as a genuine member of our team forming strong working relationships with, and most importantly gaining the trust of, all of our stakeholders, ranging from telecommunications staff, through senior academics, to our board directors.”

Cambridgeshire County Council
Sue Grace, Director Corporate and Customer Services

"4C became a valuable member of our project team by producing high quality documentation, helping us to understand the UK marketplace and playing a full and proactive role in the evaluation. The 4C procurement ‘tool-set’ fully captured our requirements and allowed the suppliers to clearly articulate their proposals at all stages of the Competitive Dialogue. If you have a need for an independent ICT consultancy we would have no hesitation in recommending 4C Strategies."

University of Oxford
Stuart Lee, Deputy Chief Information Officer
Northern Lincolnshire and Goole NHS Foundation Trust
Steve Mattern, Associate Director of IM&T

“The project to replace the telephone systems in our three hospitals was always going to be a major challenge for the Trust. We retained 4C to help us to develop our strategy, go out to procurement and transition to the new solution in one coordinated step at all three sites.

West London Mental Health Trust
Trevor Nelms, Director of Business Technology

"4C Strategies has assisted in a range of complex ICT projects, from inception through to deployment, and demonstrate a rare ability to bring together technical expertise with business acumen and tight project management skills"

University of Edinburgh
Tony Weir, Director of IT Infrastructure

"We chose 4C as a strategic partner to help the University manage a large-scale project to modernise the University’s telephony service.  This project involved full upgrade to the University’s VoIP infrastructure and migrating over 5,000 analogue extensions to the new system.  4C where chosen for their expert skills in telephony, the quality of their strategic advice and their ability to manage a business-critical project, all of which have proved invaluable in assisting the University to deliver a successful project."

University of Westminster
Thierry Delaitre, Head of FST Technical Services Department

"4C has played a key role in defining and delivering this important Mobile Learning project for the Faculty of Science and Technology. Their technical skills, relationship with the wider University, sector knowledge and project & change management skills have significantly contributed to the success of this project and its transition to Business As Usual"

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